What Do You Need to Be a Vet Tech?

If you’re considering a career in veterinary technology, you might be wondering what exactly you need to get started. Here’s a look at the essential skills and requirements for becoming a vet tech

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The Necessities

There are a few things you need in order to be a vet tech The first is a passion for helping animals. This job is not easy, and it requires long hours and a lot of patience. If you do not have a passion for helping animals, then this is not the job for you. The second thing you need is a high school diploma or equivalent. You will also need to complete a veterinary technician program, which typically lasts two years.

A high school diploma

Earning a high school diploma is the first step on the path to becoming a vet tech. To become a vet tech, you need to complete a two-year associate degree at a vet tech program accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA).
In addition to a high school diploma, you will also need to complete coursework in biology, chemistry, and other sciences. Most programs also require that you have some experience working with animals prior to enrolling in the program.

Completion of a Veterinary Technician Program

vet techs play an important role in animal healthcare, providing essential support to veterinarians and assisting in many aspects of animal care. If you’re thinking of becoming a vet tech, you likely have a passion for animals and want to help them in any way possible. But what does it take to become a vet tech?

For starters, you’ll need to complete a veterinary technician program. These programs are typically two-year Associate’s degree programs, although some may be four-year Bachelor’s degree programs. During your coursework, you’ll take classes in animal anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, clinical laboratory procedures, and much more. You’ll also get plenty of hands-on experience working with animals in a clinical setting.

Once you’ve completed a veterinary technician program, you’ll need to pass the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE). This exam is administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB) and is required for licensure in most states. Once you pass the VTNE, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a licensed vet tech!

The Extras

In order to be a vet tech, you need to have a passion for animals and a desire to help them. You also need to be able to handle long hours, be comfortable with sick and injured animals, and have a strong stomach. In addition to these qualities, there are also a few things you’ll need in terms of education and experience.


Depending on your state, you may need to be certified or licensed in order to work as a vet tech. Certification is handled by the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA). To become certified, you must first complete a veterinary technology program that has been accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). You will then need to pass a Board exam administered by the NAVTA. Once you are certified, you will need to renew your certification every 2 years.


All states require licensure for veterinary technicians. Specific requirements vary by state, but all include completing an accredited veterinary technology program and passing the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE). Some states may also require passing a state exam. After completing these requirements and passing the exams, you will be able to apply for a veterinary technician license in your state.

The Job

Vet techs are in demand! The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that the job outlook for veterinary technicians is growing much faster than the average for all other occupations through 2026.

Duties of a Veterinary Technician

A veterinary technician is a medical professional who works alongside veterinarians to provide animal care. Also known as a vet tech, this career involves working with both large and small animals, performing tasks such as taking X-rays, administering vaccinations, and assisting in surgery.

There are many different specialties within the vet tech field, so individuals can choose to focus their career on a particular area of interest, such as dentistry or emergency care. In order to become a vet tech, one must complete a two-year accredited veterinary technology program and pass a state-mandated exam.

Work Settings for Veterinary Technicians

Veterinary technicians work in a variety of settings, including private clinics, animal hospitals, zoos, government agencies, and research laboratories. They typically work on a full-time basis; however, some veterinary technicians may work part time.

Employment Outlook for Veterinary Technicians

The job outlook for veterinary technicians is good. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that employment in this field will grow 19 percent between 2016 and 2026, faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is due in part to the increasing number of pets and the need for better medical care for them. Competition for jobs may be strong in some areas because there are more people interested in these occupations than there are jobs available.

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